Memorial Day and Beyond: Silent Food Activism and the Summer BBQ

It’s finally here!  The sun is shining (most days) and Memorial Day weekend is drawing near.  We probably either all have plans already or are in the process of making them.  Are you going out with friends, having your own bbq or taking advantage of a lazy weekend at home?  No matter what you decide for this coming holiday weekend, chances are you’ll be at a gathering, which contains food, at some point during the summer.  Like most vegans, I find myself, most of the time, being the only vegan in the bunch.  What do you do when you’re invited to a non-vegan bbq?  I say, take this time to showcase foods that you would normally find at a bbq, only “veganize” them!  Your friends will realize you can eat what they eat and that the food tastes just as good, if not better.  In addition, in your own way, without saying a word, you are performing a form of activism.  You are not harming animals, cooking and sharing great foods and, in the meantime, maybe even convincing a friend or two.

Here are some tips for being a silent “food” activist:

  1. Bring or serve items people love and expect to eat at a BBQ.  Try vegan potato salad, vegan pasta salads, veggie burgers with the trimmings and vegan “veggie” kabobs.  (Check out some great recipes in the recipe section of this page.)   People are more likely to try foods they are familiar with.
  2. Print or handwrite recipe cards for your items.  After your friends realize they taste great and are better for the animals and planet, they’ll want to make them.  I guarantee you’ll get asked for recipes, so better to be prepared!
  3. Don’t over-advertise that something is vegan.  Let people figure it out for themselves.  It’s odd, but when people hear the word vegan, they tend to back away.  Let them discover the deliciousness for themselves.
  4. Show everyone that vegans do not only eat salads and that a bbq can be vegan and still decadent and flavorful.
  5. Enjoy your own food.  When you are truly enjoying something, people will want to see why.

By bringing vegan items to an outing or serving them at your outing, you’re helping the environment and the animals without even saying a word!  Activism can be a delicious thing!  Enjoy!

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